31 October 2012

Uganda: South Korea Gives Uganda Aid As Western World Cuts Theirs

United Kingdom becomes the latest country to suspend aid to Uganda.  The UK has even launched independent investigations into the alleged fraud. ( Resource: UK Cuts Aid and Launches Investigation Over Fraud in Uganda )

Britain and Ireland have slashed aid to Uganda, joining Norway, Denmark and Sweden which jointly announced last Friday that they would withhold donor support funds until culprits in the theft of Shs20bn in the Office of Prime Minister are brought to book.

The donors have consistently demanded for their taxpayers' money to be recovered. The British Newspaper Daily Mail on Tuesday carried a stoy that "No British money was taken but last night Whitehall officials said they had taken the precaution of suspending British aid payments of £4million-a-year to Mr Mbabazi's office."

In total, the newspaper says, Britain is sending £98million this year to Uganda, most of which will continue. Interestingly, the incident comes at a time when the South Korean government is set to grant millions of dollars in aid to Uganda.

The Minister of Finance Maria Kiwanuka will be signing for the grant today in Kampala at around 3pm in a ceremony that will be witnessed by the two governments. Western countries last week cut down aid of over Shs20bn aid to Uganda following the Auditor General's report that donor support funds had been swindled by Principal Accountant in the Office of Prime Minister (OPM) Geoffrey Kazinda and his cohorts.

Ireland also responded by sending a team of three officials to follow up the matter here in Kampala. They met Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi and Permanent Secretary in the OPM Pius Bigirima, whose signatures were forged by Kazinda in the fraudulent transactions, at the formers' office in Kampala.

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